Masses of Blooms in Blush and Blue Defined This Destination Wedding in Ireland
"Fun" was the first word that came to mind when Laura and Greg imagined their future wedding. "I wanted people to have a wonderful time, and to remember the event for years to come," says the bride. The couple also wanted it to be different, and held at a destination that loved ones hadn't visited before. "For me, my most wonderful memories usually come from doing something unique and new," says Laura, "and a castle in Ireland I think fits that bill!"
Once they had decided on a wedding abroad, the pair enlisted European event planner Lindsay Moynagh of House of Hannah to design and coordinate the affair. "I think when you plan a wedding abroad, you have to have a certain level of letting go," says Laura, who was happy to have Lindsay recommend amazing local vendors. The couple also trusted that their reception space would be fabulous sight unseen. "We actually booked the venue in April and didn't see it until the following September," says the bride, who went online to look up the dazzling Adare Manor located in Co. Limerick at the suggestion of her father. "It just felt right, and I knew if I was working with one person I trusted and a five-star venue, the rest of the details would fall into place."
There were some complicated details to unravel, mainly surrounding how to legally marry in another country; the bride recalls a lot of research and phone calls to marriage offices for information. "My biggest fear was that I wouldn't have done the right paperwork or have the right documents and we'd be in Ireland without a legit wedding!" she admits. "But it all worked out in the end." The design was the fun part—the couple wanted a classic event with a unique, ethereal vibe. "I love flowers, and I imagined flowers everywhere," explains Laura, a dream that Lindsay delivered big on. Masses of blooms decorated the outside of the Catholic church where the duo exchanged vows; more flowers blanketed the ball room at Adare Manor. "Walking into the reception space for the first time (we got a sneak peak of it before everyone entered it for the evening), I can still vividly remember how dazzling it all looked," Laura says. "The flowers were just beautiful and everywhere—it felt like a fairy tale."
The rest of the event was, too: The reception was filled with music and memories, with live entertainment from a 10-piece band as well as family members. Laura's brother-in-law sang and played piano for the groom's dance with his mother, and her father surprised the crowd by singing "Oh, Laura Dear" to the tune of "Danny Boy" (a classic Irish tune). "I totally lost it!" says Laura. "It truly meant the world." A lot of the bride's friends mentioned how the design embodied Laura's style—but more importantly, she believes the energy of the event reflected who she and Greg are as a couple. "Greg and I love to have fun," she says. "We love to laugh, we love to dance, and generally try to take in as many moments as possible to enjoy the little things with the people we love. I think those values translated really well to the energy of the day—everyone just seemed so happy, so light, and I could really feel the love and joy all around us."
Blue and French Vanilla
The pair's letterpress invitation suite by La Happy Design was printed in blue ink on thick, handmade cotton paper in a delicate French vanilla hue. "The main invitation featured an illustration of Adare Manor, while the information card showcased a beautiful, customized monogrammed wreath," notes Laura. Soft gray outer envelopes offered a beautiful scene of Ireland on the liner; the suite was then wrapped in vellum, tied with gold thread, and closed with a custom wax seal emblazoned with the couple's crest.
Laura's approach to wedding dress shopping was rooted in research rather than sentimentality. "To be honest, I'm not really the type to instantly find 'the one'" she admits, "which is why I feel like I tried on every dress in New York City!"
Just Felt Right
Time and again, she kept coming back to this elegant lace gown by Lili Hod. "It felt comfortable, classic, but unique," she says. "I never wanted a dress I've seen a million girls in, but I also wanted to feel like myself in it. This dress just felt right."
Made to Measure
Greg commissioned a tailor-made midnight blue tuxedo with black lapels from Suit Supply. "They let him choose a liner for the inside of the jacket—he went with a custom print of Converse sneakers and a monogram of 'L&G 6.22.19'," explains the bride.
A Memorable Moment
When Laura's father saw her for the first time that day, the bride burst immediately into tears. "I needed a makeup do-over!" she admits. "It was such a special moment that I'll never forget."
Laura wanted her bridesmaids to feel comfortable on the big day, and specifically went with a designer who could accommodate each lady's style. "Fame and Partners has awesome customization options," she shares. "You can choose the top cut, bottom, length, different straps, slits—the works!"
Dressing all the groomsmen in blue to match Greg's tuxedo felt like a bit too much, so the couple decided to go stick with a classic colorway. "They all wore black tuxes from The Black Tux," says the bride, "which was great because virtually all of the groomsmen were traveling after the wedding and we could just ship them all back to the Black Tux from Ireland."
At First Sight
Laura and Greg met in the garden for their first look, an experience they had both highly anticipated. "As soon as I saw him, I just felt happy and home," says the bride. "It was such a special moment for just the two of us."
The floral design inside the church was kept uncomplicated, allowing the focus to shift to the marriage ceremony, music, and ambience within the house of worship.
Beauty and Ritual
Greg and Laura candles surrounded by flowers during the Roman Catholic ceremony.
An Extra-Special Exit
Loved ones showered the newlyweds with confetti as they exited the church, post ceremony.
The couple's green wedding car was waiting outside the church to take them back to the castle; a fresh wreath complemented the color perfectly.
Flowers lined the stairwell leading down to the reception space, where guests passed beneath another gorgeously decorated entryway. "The floral arch was 14 feet high!" says the bride.
Sip and Sit
At the bottom of the stairs, a display of baby Guinness cocktails in customized shot glasses allowed guests to find their seats while enjoying a taste of the drinks to follow. "Funny enough, we had to time everything perfectly because if the shots sat too long, the top and bottom of the shot muddled together and got ruined," says Laura. "I can't tell you how many conversations we had about the baby Guinness shots!"
The two head tables were canopied with more beautiful blooms, while sophisticated centerpieces took center stage.
Pale Blue Place Settings
Place settings, composed of lace-patterned chargers, fringed linen napkins, and gold cutlery, sat alongside shiny brass candlesticks and gray candles. Soft, deckle-edged menu cards added texture to the table design.
"Greg insisted that he could choreograph our wedding dance on his own," says Laura. "He ended up piecing together about a dozen different YouTube dances to 'Can't Take My Eyes Off of You' and teaching me the dance. It was hilarious! But wow, I was actually impressed in the end. Not that we look like pros, but I think if you saw our dance, you'd think it was professionally choreographed!"
The couple's flower-topped wedding cake from Cove Cake Design featured lime, white-chocolate pistachio and blueberry, lemon, and coconut layers.
Photography, Laura Gordon Photography
Ceremony Venue, Saints Peter and Paul Church - Crecora
Reception Venue, Adare Manor
Wedding Design and Event Planning, House of Hannah Weddings & Events
Flowers, Floral Earth
Invitations and Stationery, La Happy Design
Bride's Gown, Lihi Hod
Jewelry, Diana Mitchell; Jennifer Behr
Shoes, Badgley Mischka
Hair, Joanne Kelly Hair
Makeup, Kate Rose Crean
Bridesmaids' Dresses, Fame & Partners
Groom's Attire, Suit Supply
Groomsmen's Attire, The Black Tux
Engagement Ring, David S. Diamonds
Wedding Bands, Susie Salztman
Music, Claire Heffernan (ceremony); The Bentley Boys (reception)
Catering, Adare Manor
Cake, Cove Cake Design
Rentals, House of Hannah Weddings & Events
Favors, California Caligraphy
Transportation, Carrig Coaches; Heritage Wedding Cars
Gifting, Basket Case
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